Three days gives you enough time to really linger in Mendoza, sampling the wines, breathing in the fresh mountain air, and wandering the tree-lined streets and fountain-filled plazas that make this wine-country hub so captivating. Read on for tips about how to make the most of your three days in Mendoza.
Day 1: Wine, Wine, Wine
Wine is a star attraction in Mendoza, and by kicking off your trip with a day of wine tasting, you can identify some favorite bottles to enjoy throughout the remainder of your stay. Since the region’s wineries are diverse and often spread out, plan to dedicate an entire day to touring winemaking facilities and sampling wines, including Argentina’s famous malbec. Wine tasting here is a bit of a choose-your-own-adventure; you can take a cycling tour to a few different wineries, pedaling through the picturesque vineyards between tastings, or you can leave the driving to someone else on the hop-on hop-off wine bus, with stops at nearly two dozen wineries. For the ultimate flexibility, opt for a private tour with your own car and driver to explore the wineries of the Uco Valley or Lujan de Cayo. Most tours include a picnic or multicourse tasting menu at one of the wineries for lunch, as well as transportation back to your Mendoza hotel in time for dinner.
Day 2: Andes Adventure
Besides producing excellent wines, the Mendoza region ranks among the world’s most spectacular wine regions, thanks to its position at the base of the Andes Mountains. Today’s your chance to take a day trip into this beautiful region near the Chilean border. If you’re in the mood for some relaxation, opt for a day trip to the Termas de Cacheuta spa in the heart of the Andes to unwind in the indoor and outdoor natural thermal spas and mud baths. Another popular day trip to the area takes visitors right up to the border with Chile to see the tallest peak in the Americas, Aconcagua, with a summit elevation of 22,841 feet (6,961 meters). Other options include fly fishing or white-water rafting on the Mendoza River or trekking through the Cordón del Plata.
Day 3: Mendoza City
Many visitors with shorter stays in Mendoza never get to enjoy the city itself, which is a shame. Start your last day off with a city sightseeing tour. Soak up the city’s appeal as you visit major landmarks such as Plaza Independencia; Cerro de la Gloria—the highest point in Mendoza—for its city views; General San Martin Park, one of the best urban green spaces in the country; and the Mundialista Stadium, site of the 1978 World Cup. In the afternoon, stop for coffee or a glass of wine at one of the alfresco cafés along Avenue Colón, and enjoy a siesta before heading out again for dinner. Remember, Argentines eat late. To wrap up your time in Mendoza, finish your night at one of the city’s milongas (tango bars) to dance the night away.